Credit: JAXA/Toyota

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Toyota Motor Corporation (Toyota) have agreed to consider the possibility of collaborating on international space exploration.

As a first step, JAXA and Toyota will accelerate an ongoing joint study of a two-person, pressurized Moon rover.

Two-person vehicle would employ fuel cell electric vehicle technologies.
Credit: JAXA/Toyota

Electric vehicle

The pressurized rover would employ fuel cell electric vehicle technologies, having a total lunar-surface cruising range of more than 6,000 miles (10,000 kilometers).

According to JAXA Vice President, Koichi Wakata, crewed, pressurized rovers will be an important element supporting human lunar exploration, “which we envision will take place in the 2030s. We aim at launching such a rover into space in 2029.”

Moon mobility.
Credit: JAXA/Toyota/Screengrab Inside Outer Space

Space mobility

A pressurized rover that can travel more than 6,000 miles in the lunar environment is a necessity. Toyota’s “space mobility” concept meets such mission requirements. Toyota and JAXA have been jointly studying the concept of a crew-carrying, pressurized rover since May of 2018.

Making tracks.
Credit: JAXA/Toyota/Screengrab Inside Outer Space

 

The JAXA/Toyota pressurized rover would be about the size of two microbuses:

Length: 20 feet (6.0 meters); width: 17 feet (5.2 meters); height: (12 feet) 3.8 meters and would offer a living space of 13m3. The rover under study would be capable of accommodating two people (four people in an emergency).

Go to this video showcasing the pressurized rover:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=26&v=1kd2nFHAAtU

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